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Superabsorbent Polymers Usage Tips

Usage Tips for Waste Lock® Superabsorbent Polymers

Usage Tips for Waste Lock® Superabsorbent Polymers

Since all waste streams are different, we suggest that the user experiment with a laboratory beaker (or similar) or waste and some polymer to determine the proper ratio of polymer-to-waste.

These polymers absorb as a result of a diffusion gradient that is created on the particle’s surface during a process of partial Sodium neutralization. This diffusion gradient means that the polymer will absorb more of less ionic solutions. In other words,

Deionized Water - Waste Lock® 770 will absorb 500-600X it’s weight.

1% NaCl in Water - Waste Lock® 770 will absorb 45-55X it’s weight.

2% NaCl in Water - Waste Lock® 770 will absorb 35-40X it’s weight .

These absorbency ratios only approximate the potential actual performance in a real waste treatment situation. Other effects include:

  • The effect of the species of ions (Calcium versus Magnesium versus Potassium etc….)
  • Pressure placed upon polymer located at the bottom of a waste pile will also decrease the polymer’s ability to swell and absorb water.
  • Strongly acidic solutions (pH < 4) substitute the Sodium on the polymer backbone and adversely affect the diffusion gradient and the ability for the polymer to absorb water. (Alkaline solutions do NOT have this effect.)

For these reasons, we strongly suggest some laboratory or pilot-scale tests be performed to determine the correct ratio of polymer-to-waste.